When my second marriage broke down, I spent a few months at my parents second home on Park Avenue in Kendal.
I have since discovered that their home had been previously occupied by the lovely lady who does my make up for the Burneside Panto, but I digress.
I was fortunate enough in the divorce settlement to have some money to buy a new place and thought long and hard about what I wanted. I eventually decided that I would like a place with 4 x good sized bedrooms, a decent sized garden with some grass and parking for at least one car.
I ended up with a 3 x bedroom house (2 of which are quite small), a small rear yard (but it’s a sun trap) and unofficial designated parking (I guess one out of three ain’t bad). I also got a whole lot more, because what I hadn’t factored in was the quality of the neighbours, which was properly revealed to me yesterday.
On the Thursday night clap along, they’d been shouts across the street and a leaflet dropped through about a socially distanced street party to commemorate the 75th Anniversary of VE Day. With not a lot else going on, our end of the street went for it and what a lovely day it was.
The children and I were out washing Mr Blue Sky (my car) in the morning, when some street-wide handmade bunting appeared, which was then strung between my place and the beautiful place opposite (occupied by two gardeners, one who has a wine cellar and the other who makes a mean scone – cream then jam, let’s get that nailed right now), the fella down the way started dishing out Union Jack print-outs which we turned into bunting and in general, people were out the front of their properties pottering about.
11am and we all stopped, heads bowed in remembrance of those who paid the ultimate price. I’m not sure that is a debt which can ever be settled. I tried to explain it in more detail to my children, but choked up. If nothing else I hope they got a semblance of the importance.
4pm and our end of the street were out, drink and scones in hand with someone’s Alexa having been instructed to belt out Vera Lynn. Sunshine and smiles in abundance, children playing on their scooters and football being played on the street. My two ate their body weights in cake and ice lollies. Social distancing was generally observed, but there may have been a few slips.
We made our exit around 7.30pm, but the gathering carried on until late into the evening, the sound of voices and people having fun providing a strange source of comfort as I promptly fell into a deep sleep.